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Three survivors’ stories and the technology that helped them along the way

About one in eight women in the U.S. will develop invasive breast cancer in her lifetime.[1] Every day we are learning more and more about breast cancer and how to fight it thanks to the efforts of clinicians, scientists, researchers, and many others around the world. These three women share their stories of how they overcame the fight against breast cancer and the technology that helped them along the way.

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Sixty-three-year-old retiree Joyce Decho spends most of her time tending to her two acres of land in Bishop, California and looking after her dog, two cats, and twenty-six tortoises. A linesperson of thirty-eight years, Joyce worked and studied incredibly hard to defy the conventions of the time and become the Los Angeles Department for Water and Power’s first female linesperson, a remarkable achievement she describes humbly.

She thought that would be the biggest challenge of her life. “I never thought I would have breast cancer,” she said. This is her story.

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One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer during her lifetime with age being the biggest risk factor for contracting the disease. This statistic can be frightening for women 40 and above for whom the American Cancer Society recommends annual mammograms.  For younger women, a breast cancer diagnosis may seem unimaginable or unlikely, until it happens to them or someone they know. Read this breast cancer survivor’s story and why you need to know: are you dense?

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Patti Beyer is a positive person by nature. But the 64-year-old retired educator was concerned after she requested, and received, a breast ultrasound-screening exam. After years of normal mammograms her doctor said she needed to follow up with a needle biopsy. Something was wrong.

She got the dreaded news a few days later while waiting for her luggage in the Washington D.C. airport: it was invasive breast cancer.

[1] http://www.cancer.org/cancer/breastcancer/detailedguide/breast-cancer-key-statistics